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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, not going to repeat the same story, so you can see why this tank is in dis-repair if you go over to my 10 gallon journal. Needless to say, Sandy destroyed a good 75% of the total plants and animals I had in my aquariums. Not exactly happy, but not going to let it stop me either.

From the ashes of the old, something new will arise (hoping in my case that this something new will be an aflame sword....more on that later)











http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=188159
The link will provide you with a basic understanding of what this tank used to be. Sure, it wasn't great, but it never really was completed in the first place. This definitely has set me many steps back in terms of my plant keeping, but even worse is what it did to my fish.

I had lost my blood parrot that I have had for 6 years now, along with a pleco I had that was one of my first fish in this tank. Both were mine since they were little, and way before my planted tank days. I'm really going to miss them both :'( I also lost the geophagus brasiliensis that is in my avatar, along with all of my angels and most of my pearl goruamis *sigh*

Currently, here is the list of fish that I have living in this tank.

Herotilapia multispinosa – “Rainbow Cichlid” x3 @4”
Trichopodus leerii – “Pearl Gourami” x2:0 @4”
Polypterus endlicheri endlicheri – “Endli Bichir” @15”
Polypterus senegalus – “Senegal Bichir” @8”

As it currently stands, the only fish additions I know I am going to do for sure are increase my pearl gourami group so that I end up with a 3:3 group. I have been tinkering around with the idea of adding another 3 rainbow cichlids so that I can get a dominant pair to form, but I am also open to the idea of just leaving the 3 alone as they are, although I think preferably I'd like the pair thing more.

I'm also considering having a pair of bristlenose or medusa plecos, or just a single of either one, but that is dependant upon my finding plecos of these species that are a decent size.

As far as focal point fish are concerned, I've been playing with the idea of adding a school/group of swordtails or some sort of larger bodied characin/bard, but that is dependant upon price and the likelyhood of their becoming a meal for the 15" bichir I have lurkin' in the tank. I'm also considering what cichlid options I want to pursue (because the main point of this tank was to have fish I like AND plants I like), and if there are any oddball fish that I might like.

So far, I'm considering having some fire mouths or some jack dempsey mutations (someone on another forum might sell a gold to me), but I want to see what I come across locally first. I'm also open to the idea of a black ghost knife or an african brown knife as well.

Anyways, I did begin the rebuilding process on this tank today. I took the old eco complete from the 10 gallon I had, rinsed it off, and added it to this tank since it needed some more depth in the back.

Here is the current list of plants
Glossotigma elatinoides – “Glosso” (new)
Cryptocoryne parva
Nymphaea zenkeri - “Red Tiger Lotus”
Nymphoides aquatic – “Banana Plant” x2 (one of them is barely hanging in there)
Echinodorus sp. – “Aflame Amazon Sword” (new)
Echinodorus sp. – “Rose Sword” (new)
Myriophyllum sp. – “Unknown” (new)(made a thread asking for ID)
Limnophia aromatica (new)
Echinodorus sp. – “Red Rubin Sword” (new)
Microsorum pteropus – “Java Fern Windelov”
Taxiphyllum sp. - “Peacock Moss” (new)
Anubias barteri – “Petite Anubias” x1
Anubias barteri - “Broad-Leaf Anubias” x1
Anubias barteri - “Coffeefolia” x1
Anubias barteri - “Anubias Nana” x1
Anubias afzelii - “Long Leaf Anubias” x2

Anything that is not new is basically bare, and I'm just hoping it will be able to come back in time.
I do have plans for more plants, but that I will post in time. For now, here are some pics of how this stands currently.













Expect to see me all over the Swap and Shop in the coming months. Between these two tanks, I have a lot of plants to make up for.
 

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Sorry about all your lose.
Hopefully things go much better for you.
The Aflame is one of my favorites, after the Red devil.
Can't wait to see your tank Fill in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have a question/statement. Now, I know that around christmas time I'm going to ensure that I get a pressurized co2 system of some sort. But what I'm wondering is when should I actually start turning the co2 on? I ask because, as it currently is, I don't exactly have a large mass of plants. I'm assuming that I should get a good chunk of my tank planted first before turning on the gas and before adding ferts again right? (I mean, I was ei dosing but as it currently is, that seems like it would be silly) I'm still going to be putting osmocote around the roots of the swords and the banana plant though, and I guess some osmocote around the tiny little bulb of lace plant I have left.

I'm debating what I should do with that piece of driftwood on the right though, the one with all of the anubias. I feel like I should get some more and basically carpet that thing in different anubias species, but I can't think of any good ones outside of all the nana varieties.

I do know that I want to add some sunset hygro again (if I can find it legally...again lol) and I definitly want some taller growing h. corymbosa. I also want to mess around with the rarer/pricier ludwigia stems. Not sure though if there are any rotala species that I would like in here. The only one I can think of would be R. macarandra japan red, but part of me gets the feeling that in a tank with these large plants and fish that it would look out of place (unless maybe I kept it shorter as a foreground/midground plant)

I also want to try some blyxa in here, either japonica or one of the other ones (not sure their differences), and I definitly want to get some crinum calminstratum back in this tank as well. Not sure though if I want to keep the unknown myro in this tank or not, but I guess that can be figured out once I have other stem plants to potentially replace it.

Also wanting to add more c. parva and try out some harder to come by crypts, like maybe have a little bushel of c. nurri back where I used to have c. wendtii.

Fish additions are going to be a whole other story, but I think I want to focus on the plants first, since I am a tad worried that with the light I have and the lack of plants I have that algae will start popping up more and more. And I will get that bba taken care of eventually.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
By the way, can anyone comment on if there is a better place to put my korelia in the tank? Is it fine where it is or do you think it would be beneficial to put it somewhere on the left side?

In about a week I can start updating this, and then from there on I can really start to show change when I get a ton of plants. Also, I made a WTB thing for a CO2 system for this tank, so that purchase will be very helpful as well.
 

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The 75 is going to be NICE! I like that you keep fish you like, not just the standard. Let me know if you go with Firemouth's and how they are with the plants and substrate. I think the korilla is in the right spot. Keep it up!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Red Rubin Sword
And I totally will be getting more cichlids, maybe a few oddballs as Tetras as well or something
Kinda depends on what gets slog and what won't get eaten by the bichir
Pics in a week just about
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Pics 2morrow, I also have two orders of plants that I'm waiting on.
Need a bit of advice though, my swords do not look so hot right now, but I also have not been dosing either. I don't have that many plants in the tank atm, so should I re-start EI dosing or should I wait until I have more plants in the tank? If I do wait, it wouldn't be for more than a week anyways, since that is when I am getting a nice chunk of new things.

Also not sure if my aflame is still there and if a few other plants still exist. To be totally honest, I'm thinking of just scraping some of those anubias rhizomes and just replacing them with fresh plants, considering how slowly they grow regardless. I also really need to trim that banana plant back, since now all it wants to do is grow up to the light and not form proper lilly pads due to my night time aeration.

Still got a ton more plants that I want to get in this think, and I definitely want to be messing around with some stem plants now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

So, new full tank shot as of today. Sadly, not much really looks different, but you can get an idea of how big my big bichir is (and why he makes it difficult to plant and stock this tank at times lol). I lost my limnophia aromatica and moved the last offshoot of my old red tiger lotus to my new 10 gallon. My Aflame Sword, sadly, did not do well and is gone :( I also need to properly tie down those windelov ferns once and for all, but I'm really hoping that they will take off in due time.

Nice pic of this guy, probably going to make him my new profile picture as well, since he is now my oldest fish. As you can see though, I'm in need of more c. parva since mine looks less than fantastic.

I added more of this from my 5.5 gallon that I brought home from college. I believe it is Myriophyllum heterophyllum, and it will stay there until I decide to do something else with it, most likely in the background somewhere as a nice big bush, although I still have no idea what I would do with the trimmings of this plant. At the very least though, it will fill up space until I can get stem plants again.

I added some more gloss from my 5.5 gallon into this tank as well. I placed some osmocote tabs underneath the mini, partually buried, patches as well, cause I would love to get this plant to carpet in here. If that doesn't work though, I might try a carpet of hydrocotyle or s repens.

Anyways, before christmas I have some plants coming in, which I am SUPER EXCITED FOR. I have some Anubias barteri - “Coffeefolia” and Cryptocoryne parva and Echinodorus parviflorus – “Tropica” from 245Bettalover that are going into this tank. I'm also waiting for some crypts and other plants to get from me from someone on APC, but I don't want to say what those plants are yet cause surprises can be fin sometimes :p

Anyways, as far as my plans for this tank, I don't really have the fish part of it set into stone at all. But for plants, I do have my ideas that I want to implement.
Firstly, around where the Rose Sword (and hopefully new Aflame one day in the future) are, I want to create a patch of various crypt species and varieties that I find interesting. Things with color and pattern basically.
In the foreground as well, I want to get some Blyxa japonica to create a bit of a seperating bush around the front where all of my driftwood is, in the area where the bichir's tail is in the fts. I also want to get some h. pinnatifida for the foreground again, and grow tons and tons of it. Maybe I'll keep the parva closer to the right side of that little area and do pinnatifida on the leftern most side.
I want to get h. polysperma sunset again, and that I would most likely keep near the wood with all of the anubias on it, either keeping it short in front of that wood or growing it behind the wood. I'm also considering throwing some Nesaea pedicellata 'golden' and maybe even Nesaea crassicaulis (the red one) around somewhere as well. I also want to have a nice crinum of some sort right at the most right part of that right piece of wood, near where I'm going to be having a bunch of large monster plants. I also want to get a big Lace Leaf for the left side again, and then have a mess of different ludwigia species and varieties in that area as well. L. glandulousa and L. inclinata and its variations have definitly caught my eye lately, as well as different pogostemon species and even rotala macarandra. And of course, L. aromatica is always an option to be kept somewhere in the tank, unless I got p. stellata (which I think looks very very similar).
As far as the driftwod goes, the left piece I want to become covered in petite anubias, and the right piece to be covered in different anubias species of a larger variety. The second piece to the left, I want the top to be covered in Windelov and then the bottom part to be either a different java fern type, or just let moss take over that along with the wood making a little cave with that wood.
I might want to get some HC or riccia growing on the stones I have throughout the tank, and I think I'll eventually pick up some Hygroryza aristata to let float around the top.

Of course, if I find any other plants that catch my fancy I will probably consider where to fit them into this mess as well, so long as it looks okay with everything else. I swear, this will look a LOT more like a real planted tank before I go back to school at the end of January.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Just picked up a lace plant
It is pretty rough looking but it was cheap and the bulb is good and firm

Debating on fish options. For sure going to be attempting to pair out my rainbows.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Nice endli. You aren't afraid of it eating your other fish?
Nope, at least, not the current fish. I've had this guy for like, 6 or 7 years now, and in that time, the only fish he ever ate on me where rainbow fish that were not fully grown. He would wait until night when they would be chilling at the top sleeping, and then just inhale them. Its funny, because he doesn't really like going after food at the bottom of the tank, but if it's floating at the top he will swim right to it and devour it.

If it is bigger than his mouth though, he is fine with it, and quiet honestly, if it isn't a fish that sticks near the top, he is okay with it too. Back when he was only a 10" monster, I had a baby EBJD (A little 2 incher) that I kept with him....and I watched as they both tried eating the same food and he only nicked the little fish and then swam away. He grew up with that EBJD until it became a nice 6" fish, until that ENJD died when I went away for three week :(

But he is totally cool with the pearl gourami's and the cichlids. Only thing though is that, the pearls have to be a decent size, because I tried smaller blue gourami's once and he ate them after they would fight with each other. Again, he took them out when they were at the top......which might be why my pearls like to be all over the place, which I am okay with because they still have great colors (even though its only two of them now.....I need more asap)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I'll post pics a bit later, but I got some new things today that I'm super excited for. I got one male and 3 female pearl gouramis (finally) and a nice black ghost knife today (so excited for these to grow). Going to eventually get a few more fish, but this is very very nice.

As far as plants go, I got another coffeefolia, and some hygrophilia corymbosa (probably siamese or something, whatever variety it is that can actually get pretty big, which I like cause I want it for the height in the background near my piece of wood covered in anubias)

I also decided that I should restart EI dosing again, especially with a co2 system underway, so that will be great.

I'll put pics up later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·

Somehow, the addition of another lace plant and some H. corymbosa make this tank feel a lot more balanced than it did before. Though, I'll be honest, this tank still feels relatively empty.

As you can see, I also moved the myro to over here, since I feel like it will fill out better in this spot. However, I think I might just want to replace this plant asap, as even though it is pretty, I feel like there are other similar looking plants that are probably easier to get rid of when I want to sell trimmings. That, or I could put some other sort of stem right here. There are now two good sized (in terms of the bulb itself) lace plants in this area, and in due time I'm expecting them to become monsters.

Still not quiet rooting as well as I would like, but this is the effect I'm going for with the windelov. Except even thicker and more condensed when it starts rooting and growing on its own.

These already have side shoots, and I know the plant is supposed to be a fast grower and a quick rooter, so I am very excited to see what this will do for me. It seems like a great background plant and is perfect for giving the anubias a little bit of shade.





These guys are a little camera shy. The big two are my original males, and I recently picked up another male and three females that are a bit smaller. They are getting along well with the other fish though, including the big bichir, so that is always lovely. I really love these fish in good size groups, they are so pretty with all of their colors and shine and flowing fins.

Couldn't resist snapping a pic of this little guy. I call him phallic cause of a conversation that occurred when I bought this albino sen. Note the size difference between this and the big endli. However, they feed right next to eachother and get along just dandy. I swear, bichirs are possibly the best fish ever.


Okay, I LOVE black ghost knifes, but GOD DAMN ARE THEY ANNOYING TO SNAP A PIC OF. However, I'm sure it will be easier once the fish gets adjusted and once there are more plants in the tank. Gotta pick up some bloodworms or something as well for this guy.

Dominant male Rainbow Cichlid. The scraps are because he likes to fight with the other two males in the hardscape of my tank. Oh cichlids, you silly things. I'm debating whether or not I should try and just have him with a female and remove the rest, or if I should just let the three be. He does show nice colors when he wants to get mad at the other males, but I think he'd show those yellows and even more if he had a lady to show off for.

Anyways, I'm waiting on plants that should be here wednesday and to set up my soon to be co2 system. Gah, I'm so excited I can hardly wait :p
Merry Christmas everybody.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Bit of an update. I finally got a good pic of the black ghost knife, but then the bichir ate it.......less than pleased about that. I'll put the pics up anyways.
Got a late shipment of plants that had been lost for two weeks in the mail. Really, only one plant survived, working out details about the rest. I'm also arranging the purchase of more plants, and already have everything but the tank on the way to my house to get co2 up and running.

I'm going ahead and ordering a 15lb aluminum tank, since it looks nice and has handles and stuff, and is a nice in-between size and all that. Meaning, in like a week or so I should have this all up and running.

On second thought, I might just get a 20lb.
 

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Great to see you didn't let the storm stop you. Glad to see you bouncing back. Love the Pearl Gouramis. One of my favorite fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Great to see you didn't let the storm stop you. Glad to see you bouncing back. Love the Pearl Gouramis. One of my favorite fish.
I've had a good deal of weird things happen in this tank, even before this. But as long as I have even a single fish in this tank, I'm not giving up on it. Even if that single fish likes to eat more than his worth in tank mates (I think that bichir's body count over the last 5 or so years is 6+ adult sized rainbows, some 4+ blue gourami's, and now one black ghost knife >_<)

Fish for this tank are so hard to find sometimes lol. I'm surprised my smaller pearls are still around. I think it has to do with them always being close to each other and the larger ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I just realized something rather stupid as well. I was wondering why, with what is considered Hi-lighting according to Hoppy's chart, my plants were relatively uncolored up. I figured out why, and I feel stupid for it now.

The glass I have over the tank is super dirty and chalky, to the point where I can't even see through it myself.......that's gotta be blocking out a significant portion of light lol. Which means I guess its time for me to clean my glass pronto.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Yah, I still need to clean my glass. Anyways, lemme get to the pics :p


Yah, I'm sad. I really liked having a south american ghost knife. This pic was taken on the 30th, and it was just a few days later that it no longer was found in my tank. Stupid bichir, I love you and I hate you sometimes XD. I'm debating what fish I should get in its place now, either an african brown ghost knife (doesn't get as big as a black ghost but gets big enough for this tank, not as cool looking and cannot do the same things) or try and get a larger Black ghost knife (Hard to find large and a lot more money when they are found. A large one might be big enough to harm my smaller pearl gourami's and now angels) My one friend is also insisting on getting me a fish as my (now super late) christmas present. Who am I to argue with a pretty woman on that front :p Anyways, I'm not sure which I'd do, since I know where to get both (I think) but there are in opposite places from each other. Gah, decisions, decisions. Any thoughts on the matter would be great.


This shot is also from the 30th. Its some clippings of Rotala wallichi from my 5.5. They are doing pretty well, but when I added some more the extras just ended up getting uprooted and floating all over the place. I hate it when stems get uprooted and float around, and its always the same exact stems too :\. Either way, it's turned greener in this tank (due to my lack of cleaning glass), but I still have a lot more light I can potentially give. I need a timer for the second bank of lights (I've only been running half my total fixture). I might ditch this in favor of something else, but I'm not sure.


This, so that you can see that I am still dealing with BBA (granted, I haven't been active about its removal either) and that I am attempting to get small snails into this tank....and failing. I think my rainbows have developed a taste for snails now lol.


So, I got a shippment of plants from someone on another forum, and it got lost in the mail for two weeks and just didn't end well for anyone really. Guy was nice enough about it and is re-sending most of what I wanted over. But this plant, man this plant can sure survive. Lagenandra meeboldii 'pink', man this is a massive plant and a sturdy thing. I've been talking about this in a few threads on this forum, and I'm going to be happy to start propegating this through other people's tanks soon enough. I want some new growth and more compactness to occur, and am thinking about splitting this plant into two to try and achieve that. Right now, I have it tied onto a rock to keep the rhizome just above the substrate. This plant came in with massive roots though, so its quiet the plant.


My dominant rainbow fish being all colorful and stuff. Sadly, he likes to tone it down the minute he sees me trying to take a pic, but still, he looks pretty cool.

Same deal here too :p

And here

And my best attempt at a pic of all three being nice. Which never happens lol. A lot of chasing and flaring of late, but it keeps the tank interesting.






Now, these are nice. I wasn't sure if I wanted to go the angel route again, but when I saw these I just had to. They are a tad small, but my bichir has a history have being good with small cichlids. If its not a cichlid, not so much, but cichlids yes. I got 4 of these little guys now. I'm not really sure EXACTLY what you would call their variety (any help there would be great), but I'm saying something like Blue Leopard's or something. They do have a good deal of blue in the for the most part, some more than others, but I'm a sucker for a busy pattern. It wasn't until I brought them home that I even noticed the blues, they came out much better in my tank than in the store.

Now, as far as plans and things, oh boy does this tank have a LOT in store. I'm playing around with osmocote tabs and gro-soil and gro-humate tabs in the substrate. Once I get the glass clean and the lights the way I want them, there will be a lot of growth in this tank. One thing as well, I mentioned in my 10 gallon journal, my 20lb aluminum co2 tank just got here today. That, combined with the regulator, drop checker, tubes, ect, mean that I am missing just three things for this tank. I forgot to get a diffuser (fail on my part), I'm wanting to just get the larger atomic diffuser that niclog has on here (I might change that in the future to an inline thing, but tbh I don't care about tubes sticking down into the tank or anything like that). I also need to actually fill the tank with gas as well.

Lastly, I need plants. And luckily I have them on the way. A lot of plants. Like, the most I've ever had at one time.......I'm not going to mention everything now, but the next update will be big enough that I am going to just re-post the entire updated list of plants on here. I have some Green Gecko and Crypt usteriana coming to me soon, eventually I'll get some nurii as well but that'll be a while. I've also got some moss comming my way and some anubias and lillies, but what I'm most excited for are the stems I'm getting. And I'm getting some nice stems, I'm really excited about this.

As far as things going on with plants already in here....my anubias are making a comeback, and my corymbosa seems to be adjusting very well to this tank. Glosso seems to be unhappy with me, but I feel that it is only a temporary unhappiness. I swear, this tank will have a carpet in it somehow, someway. If I can't get glosso to work, I might try UG or Staurogyne repens, but if I do get glosso to work....I might try them anyways lol.

The only MAJOR plant that I still don't have any sign of getting back is Crinum calminstratum. I'm going to be hunting for a nice specimin or two in a few months time. My Lace plants seem to be doing well also, although I'm sure more light and co2 will be very welcomed. My swords seem to be struggling a bit though. That's the one thing I hate about swords, when you buy them they seem to melt back a ton, at least for me anyways. Crypts don't melt on me, but swords, pshhhh. However, I do see new growth on both the rose and the rubin, and neither one of them has been uprooted by anything, so I'm confident that they will spring up like mad once I get more liberal with the root ferts, light, and co2.

This tank is going to be a jungle when I'm through :p
 
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